Manitoba aerospace sector gets funding boost

Manitoba has the third largest aerospace cluster in Canada with more than 50 aerospace firms either headquartered or have major centres of operation and where they provide over 4,600 well-paying middle class jobs.

On Oct. 10, 2018, Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD), together with Scott Johnston, Manitoba Member of the Legislative Assembly for St. James, announced $10 million in funding towards four projects to promote innovation, skills development and growth in Manitoba’s aerospace industry.

The Government of Canada and the Province of Manitoba worked together to identify initiatives designed to secure the future of aerospace in Manitoba.


Together these initiatives address new and emerging competitive pressures, while supporting a growth strategy that addresses the challenge to innovate, maintain technological competencies, and improve productivity.

Four projects will benefit from the following investments:

  • Composites Innovation Centre: $1.8 million to establish a collaborative space at Red River College’s Smart Factory to develop, demonstrate, and validate new advanced aerospace composite products and processes;
  • Magellan Aerospace Limited: $5 million to introduce enhanced aerospace design, production, and technologies to the Manitoba aerospace industry, reinforcing Manitoba’s competitive advantage as a leader in the global aerospace supply chain;
  • West Canitest R&D Inc. (WestCaRD): $1.6 million to expand the range of engine testing capabilities of GE Aviation Test, Research and Development Centre, solidifying
  • Winnipeg as the preferred location for testing of GE engines;
  • Composites Innovation Centre: $1.6 million to administer and deliver the Manitoba Aerospace Fund aimed at supporting product commercialization, process innovation, and business development activities of small- and medium-sized enterprises in the Manitoba aerospace sector.

These projects will lead to the creation of high quality jobs, introduce new product design capabilities and manufacturing technologies, facilitate the introduction of innovative composite manufacturing technologies, and expand engine testing capabilities

“Our government’s investment in the Canadian aerospace industry builds on our ambitious plan to turn Canada’s economic strengths into global successes,” said Bains.

“These projects support a key economic cluster in Manitoba and across Western Canada that will continue to create the good middle-class jobs of tomorrow.”

“Manitoba’s aerospace sector is globally-competitive and a significant part of our provincial economy,” Scott Johnston, MLA for St. James, on behalf of Manitoba Growth, Enterprise and Trade Minister Blaine Pedersen.

“We continue to support the sector’s development of a cutting-edge workforce and are pleased to have identified these projects as priorities in building the next generation of advanced manufacturing expertise here in Manitoba.”

“We are pleased to be supported by Western Economic Diversification Canada in launching a collaborative technology development project that brings together industry, research and academic partners. We are also pleased to support the Manitoba Aerospace Fund’s goal of increasing industrial competitiveness and our aerospace sector’s economic footprint,” said Doug McCartney, president and CEO, Composites Innovation Centre.

“Our focus with these funds is to collaboratively develop capabilities to position Manitoba, and Canada, as a leader in the aerospace industry.”

“Magellan is both pleased and appreciative to continue the partnership with Western Economic Diversification Canada to invest in strengthening the advanced manufacturing environment in Winnipeg,” said Dan Pashniak, general manager, Magellan Aerospace, Winnipeg.


“This partnership with WD Canada announced today will contribute directly to the technologies and training required to deliver the specialized manufactured goods for the next generation of aerospace products.”

“WestCaRD welcomes the Government of Canada’s financial support for advanced aircraft engine test, research and development in Winnipeg,” said Bob Hastings, chief executive officer, WestCaRD.

“New and continuing high value employment opportunities are generated directly through developmental test operations, as well as indirectly through the advanced research and development needed to design, maintain and operate new generations of evermore efficient, safe, and environmentally improved aircraft. This investment in the future puts a spotlight on Manitoba, highlighting the economic strength of its aerospace sector, and is a shining example of the government and industry working together to ensure Canada’s, and Manitoba’s long-term economic health and well-being.”

Quick facts

  • Manufacturing is the largest industrial sector in Winnipeg;
  • Manitoba is home to the third largest aerospace hub in Canada, employing more than 4,600 people; and
  • This investment will create approximately 70 jobs and grow the regional economy through expanded global sales.

One thought on “Manitoba aerospace sector gets funding boost

  1. bain’s is an absolute lightweight- Our Canadian aerospace industry has been bleeding for years. Many Canadian owned aerospace manufacturers have been acquired by US VC’s and industry competitors over the past ten years. We were once fourth largest aerospace parts supplier in the world.
    Most aerospace manufacturing companies are here primarily for US offset purposes. Under Trump his could definitely change and leave us as vulnerable as we are in the auto sectors.

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